The Battle of the Sexes in French Cinema, 1930-1956 (Paperback)
  • The Battle of the Sexes in French Cinema, 1930-1956 (Paperback)
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The Battle of the Sexes in French Cinema, 1930-1956 (Paperback)

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£24.99
Paperback 384 Pages / Published: 25/11/2013
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In The Battle of the Sexes in French Cinema, 1930-1956, Noel Burch and Genevieve Sellier adopt a sociocultural approach to films made in France before, during, and after World War II, paying particular attention to the Occupation years (1940-44). The authors contend that the films produced from the 1930s until 1956-when the state began to subsidize the movie industry, facilitating the emergence of an "auteur cinema"-are important, both as historical texts and as sources of entertainment.

Citing more than 300 films and providing many in-depth interpretations, Burch and Sellier argue that films made in France between 1930 and 1956 created a national imaginary that equated masculinity with French identity. They track the changing representations of masculinity, explaining how the strong patriarch who saved fallen or troubled women from themselves in prewar films gave way to the impotent, unworthy, or incapable father figure of the Occupation. After the Liberation, the patriarch reemerged as protector and provider alongside assertive women who figured as threats not only to themselves but to society as a whole.

Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822355618
Number of pages: 384
Weight: 522 g
Dimensions: 226 x 155 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"The Battle of the Sexes in French Cinema, 1930-1956 makes an incontrovertible case for a social history of French cinema, bringing to light a whole world of films, and a period in French film history, overlooked by formalist critics. Noel Burch and Genevieve Sellier's analyses of character, gender, and ideology are trenchant, and there is an analytic surprise on every page of this fascinating book. Required reading!"-Alice Kaplan, author of Dreaming in French
"This flawless translation of La Drole de guerre des sexes is a boon to cinema studies. Noel Burch and Genevieve Sellier rightly argue that attention to the New Wave and auteur theory obfuscated much of the great film made in France during the years prior to the war, during the Occupation, and after the Liberation. Their book will rejuvenate historical and ideological study of classical French cinema in the Anglophone world. Anyone interested in French film history and theory will find it invaluable."-Tom Conley, author of An Errant Eye: Poetry and Topography in Early Modern France
"[An] important and thorough work of film history and criticism. . . . Graham's expert translation brings to English readers an invaluable examination of a period of French history as represented in its cinema and analyses of particular films. . . . [T]he authors perform an important service to film history by revisiting and reframing well-known films and by unearthing many largely forgotten films. Essential. All readers." -- L. M. Anderst * Choice *
"A classic in the field and we can congratulate the press on this new translation, not so as to freeze its original ideas into a new orthodoxy but rather to serve as a spur for continued reflection." -- Hugo Frey * American Historical Review *
"Burch and Sellier's seminal study not only broke the pattern when it first came out in the original French but also provided a timely and insightful account of attitudes to gender and shifting sexual identities during three of the most eventful periods in twentieth-century French history ... The originality and lasting appeal of [their] approach thus derives from the choice of an under-studied section of French cinema history as much as from the in-depth analysis of the relationship between film and society across a vast array of mainstream, high-quality productions alongside unsuccessful or marginal productions." -- Romona Fotiade * French History *
"[T]his translation of Burch and Sellier's study will prove immensely valuable for non-French-speaking researchers..." -- Claire Boyle * French Studies *

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